Hunting in Australia

Jager

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 25, 2012
Messages
658
Location
Australia
I am currently in the planning stages of organising a DIY Elk/Mulie hunt in the US. I have found it difficult at stages to gleam any real basic info on how the different 'systems' operate in the USA, ie tags, points etc. I have had a great deal of help from members on different forums who have offered explanations on how these 'systems' work.

It has got me to thinking that for anyone in the US wanting to hunt in Australia they will probably face the same issues as I am. Fortunately or unfortunatley we do not have seasons, for the most part, in place like the US, apart from Hog deer in Victoria.

First off I will discuss hunting access. On the whole, only two States in Australia have public land access, that is, hunting in selected State Forest and National Parks. Victoria without a doubt has the best system in place. A game licence for under $50 AUD is required, and to obtain this licence the hunter merely applies and pays the requisite fee. This licence then allows the hunter to hunt game animals in any of the specified hunting locals at any time of year. Some areas are closed to vehicle access however over the predominantly winter period, foot or pushbike access is allowed. The hunting opportunities abound for hunters wanting to harvest Sambar deer across the Victorian High Country. Victoria's geography and land available for hunting make for a DIY backcounty hunters dream.

New South Wales is the second State to offer true public land access, but their system differs greatly to Victoria's.
A hunter must obtain a Game Council licence, which requires sitting a 4 hour course, then sitting an exam and on successful completion and payment of a fee, the licence will be issued. A hunter must then book to use whatever location they wish to hunt in, whereas in Victoria, you simply pull in to your chosen location and go hunting.

Hunting is allowed on all private land in Australia with the permission of the landholder. States that require hunters to carry a game licence, still require hunters to carry a licence while hunting on private land.

Species available in Australia are-

Red deer
Fallow deer
Chital deer
Rusa deer
Sambar deer
Hog deer
Wild boar
Wild Bull
Camel
Dingo
Wild goat
Water buffalo
Banteng
Donkey


OS visitors will require different permits to hunt in their chosen State and should direct their questions to the relevant States Police Force, who will also be able to advise on importation of firearms and related equipment into Australia.

This is a very basic overview I know, but it is a starting point for anyone intereseted, feel free to pm me if you have any questions and I will do my best to answer them. We have some great opportunities here to take world class trophies and the adventure is first class.
 

ozyclint

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 27, 2012
Messages
1,162
Location
Queensland, Downunder
great info there jager.
i'd have to say that hunting here in australia is alot easier to access than in north america. if you have permission for private land or hunt public land like jager explained you have hunting 365 days a year. i spent 6 months in BC canada a few years ago and the regs drove me crazy. you almost have to be a solicitor to get you head around the laws there. to be honest it really put me off hunting in north america. i'm a DIY kind of guy and there are limited places where a non resident alien can go. at least that is my impression. i'd love to be told otherwise...... i'd be happy to trade a hunt with someone. i'd love to hunt elk, mulies, black bear, mtn goat, etc, etc. PM if interested. i could trade a hunt here in australia or new zealand.

i'd like to add to the aussie species list too-
hares, foxes, feral cats, rabbits.

then there is New Zealand too. a sportsmans paradise.......
 
OP
Jager

Jager

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 25, 2012
Messages
658
Location
Australia
Dave I am planning on 2014, will probably do a familiarisation trip this year though, just with a camera to get the feel of things.

I will move on to the necessaries for NZ later, what I can say though is there are no seasons over the ditch either, which makes for year round opportunities on differing species.
 

fencesitter

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 25, 2013
Messages
376
Location
Colorado (south suburb of Denver)
G'Day Gents..... I used to live in W.A., in a variety of towns, ranging from Noranda, Dianella, Darlington, Willaghee, etc. I miss Australia, that's for sure, and loved Perth. In most western states, in the U.S. there is a points system (one exception to my knowledge is New Mexico). In Colorado, Utah, Wyoming, etc., you accumulate points, and many of the most sought after units, are taking 20+ years to draw. However, some states have a true lottery system, which enables an extremely lucky chap / cobber / sheila, to draw a coveted tag in his / her first or second year. Many of the western states also have OIL (Once in a Lifetime) species, which include Shiras Moose, Desert Bighorn, Rocky Mountain Bighorn, and Rocky Mountain Goat. In Colorado, you are absolutely required to apply for 3 years, prior to having any remote chance of drawing, unless you apply for an undersubscribed unit. Of course, there is always decent over the counter hunting, in many of the western states, where you hunt public land in what are prescribed as over the counter units. I never had the opportunity to hunt in W.A., but did see a quite a few Roos / Wallabees, and a ton of incredibly beautiful birds, the kookabura being one, as well as the 28's which are nothing short of stunning!

We need more Aussies in the states! Start applying.... You won't regret it, especially when you draw one of the coveted tags! Best of luck!
 
OP
Jager

Jager

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 25, 2012
Messages
658
Location
Australia
Thanks for the info fencesitter, much appreciated. So what you are saying is I can purchase an OTC tag without any points? What sort of units are you likely to get with an OTC tag?

Cheers
 

fencesitter

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 25, 2013
Messages
376
Location
Colorado (south suburb of Denver)
You can absolutely buy OTC tags, without any points. There are a multitude of OTC areas in Colorado, which offer a variety of terrain, for elk. Mule Deer is an exception in Colorado. It is draw only, unless there are leftover tags in certain units, which there always are from year to year. Anyway, best of luck to you, mate!
 

WonkyWapiti

Senior Member
Joined
Oct 25, 2012
Messages
364
Location
Washington State
Nice write up Jager. The one thing I remember about Australia from when I was over there for wargames at RAAF base Curtin with the Marine Corps is that every damn thing in the country will kill you, lol. In all seriousness, I loved Australia and the people there were awesome but damn there were lots of snakes and scorpions and nasty creep crawly things. I miss my Vitamin B aka Victoria Bitter.
 
OP
Jager

Jager

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 25, 2012
Messages
658
Location
Australia
Cheers WonkeyWapiti, VB lol yes would have to be the most widely consumed beer in the Defence Force.

Not sure on everything trying to kill u, Grizzlies would be worse.
 

realunlucky

Super Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Jan 20, 2013
Messages
10,504
Location
Eastern Utah
Jager almost all states require a hunter safety class( one time) be taken before you can buy a license. Be sure to check with the state to see what options you have being out of country
 

fencesitter

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 25, 2013
Messages
376
Location
Colorado (south suburb of Denver)
Yeah, that's a great point - realunlucky, and along with that, the courses typically require a live shooting session, so I don't believe that you can do all of the courses online. I can't imagine paying $1500 for a flight to the states, from Australia, to take a hunters safety course! Perhaps, make the trip, take the hunters safety course, and do an OTC hunt, all in a matter of a 14 day period. A whirlwind trip :)
 
OP
Jager

Jager

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 25, 2012
Messages
658
Location
Australia
Thanks, this is the info I am after, much appreciated.

Don't forget, anu queries on hunting the South Pacific, ask away.
 

Shrek

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 17, 2012
Messages
7,068
Location
Hilliard Florida
Jager , the course is very basic and is nothing for someone who has any experience at all with firearms and hunting. I don't know if there is any training needed to get a hunting license down under but if there is it may be accepted by the US state you wish to hunt. If not , the US state department may have a program to qualify you. If you have any military service where you qualified on a weapon it may substitute for the range portion of the course and the rest can be completed online. You're not the first foreigner to come and hunt the USA so there is most likely a program through the State Department.
 

Shrek

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 17, 2012
Messages
7,068
Location
Hilliard Florida
So this got me wondering and ... your Australian hunting license will qualify as a hunter safety certificate in Colorado according to their website. Colorado has the easiest OTC elk licenses. It would be my guess that the rest of the states will accept your Australian hunting license also.
Montana didn't have the information on their website but if you were born before 1/1/1985 you are exempt in Montana.
If I were in your shoes and were coming to check things out I would time it for second or third season in Colorado and buy an OTC tag and give it a try. I'm pretty sure some Colorado guys would point you on some really good areas since you live in Australia and are not going to hunt it every year or bring 10 friends with you. I'm sure you have the equipment and a rifle can't be that hard to bring...I think :)
 
Last edited:
OP
Jager

Jager

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 25, 2012
Messages
658
Location
Australia
Thanks for the info Dave, certainly a big help, I am leaning more and more towards Colorado as my first destination for Elk hunting in the US know.

Perhaps military experience and a current Aust. firearms licence may have things fairly well covered, that is another box I can tick off.
 

Shrek

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 17, 2012
Messages
7,068
Location
Hilliard Florida
If you are coming this year you have until april 2 to apply for a first season tag in colorado. I have not been keeping up with the best odds and places but if you apply in the next few days you can almost certainly get a first season tag to a reasonably good area and if not drawn you will still pick up a preference point and can still hunt 2nd or third season OTC this year. I'm sure if you ask there is someone knowledgeable on here who can point you to a good area with good draw odds.
 

Shrek

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 17, 2012
Messages
7,068
Location
Hilliard Florida
And to give you a little more info the dates are October 12 to 16 for first season , October 19 to 27 for second , and November 2 to 10 for third. The first season is draw only and the next two have over the counter tags for much of the state.
 

Dedicated_Elk

Junior Member
Joined
Feb 27, 2014
Messages
14
Location
Colorado
How is it going, I live here in Colorado, and a friend and myself are planning a hunt in New Zealand for this time of year in 2015. Have been planning for about 6 months already and are getting extremely excited!! saw your post on wanting to hunt here in the states and would be more than happy to help you out! we live in Grand Junction colorado and both have hunted majority of the units popular for Mule deer and of course Elk. Huge archery hunters and rifle. What question do you have about hunting here??? PM me and i would be more than happy to give you as much information as your would like on how to see what your chances are, what the draw to kill ratio is for each unit in the past few years, and can defiantly tell you what areas are worth hunting in certain times of the seasons for majority of all western colorado.
 

JDeanP

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 10, 2013
Messages
222
Location
TN
Most states recognize hunter safety from other states. Here in TN you can take your course online and schedule a single field day to get your certification. For an international hunter it might be worth looking into to save a few days.
 
Top